I’m not sure how this post is going to be received – I feel that I may be stepping into a bit of a taboo subject in the world of blogging. So, being me, I decided to write it anyway!
Now don’t get me wrong, I like to have a peek at my blog stats as much as the next person (mostly to laugh at the ridiculous search terms people have used and stumbled upon my blog), but there seems to be a bit of an obsessive thing going on around the blogosphere at the moment …..
On Twitter and on British Mummy Bloggers, there has been much discussion of late about how to increase your followers, get more blog traffic, how many times is acceptable to tweet a link to your latest blog post, should you set up a Facebook page for your blog, and SEO (search engine optimisation, yeah, I had to look it up!).
So here’s the thing: I totally get that if your blog is linked to a business or is an aid to help you sell something, that you’d want to get as much ‘footfall’, so to speak, as possible, so all the things listed above might be relevant. However, most of the people embroiled in these discussions seem to be writers of personal blogs (my favourite kind, I don’t really ‘do’ business blogs, or blogs with endless product reviews). And yes, I know I do the occasional product review on my blog, but I only ever review products that I’m interested in, and which are directly relevant to me and my life. On that note, if any wine merchants out there need any booze reviewing, I’m your gal!
What I genuinely don’t ‘get’, however, is the obsession with blog stats by writers of personal blogs. We all love to get a comment, don’t we, and if somebody takes the time and trouble to comment on my blog, I will always go and visit their blog and leave a comment in return. That’s the way I’ve made some of my best blogging buddies over the years. Not by obsessing over faceless visitor numbers and followers – for me, that’s just SO not what it’s all about.
Quite often, I see bloggers running giveaways for which the entry criteria include ‘leave me a comment, become a follower of my blog, become a fan of my page on Facebook and tweet a link to my post on Twitter etc etc’.
And, even more weirdly in my humble opinion, people post on Twitter saying ‘five more followers and I’ll have reached 350. Please retweet!’
I genuinely don’t understand why you would want 1,000 faceless people to read your blog, follow you on Twitter or whatever. To me, it smacks of that schoolkid mentality of wanting to be the most popular kid in the playground. I’d far rather have 20 genuine readers, who I can ‘get to know’ and interact with regularly.
In all honesty, does having 500 Twitter followers make your Twitter experience more enjoyable than if you had 100? Do you get more enjoyment out of writing your blog if you know that your stats say 1,000 people read it today, rather than 100? I don’t believe you do.
Don’t get me wrong, I love that people read my blog, I love it when people leave me comments, and I love that blogging has opened a whole new world for me, and I’ve made some great friends through it. And it’s always lovely to get a comment from a new person. But I don’t think that I’d love it exponentially (is that the right word?) more, the more comments/followers/whatever I had. Certainly I don’t feel the need to spend time and energy trying to increase my traffic by all the means listed above.
Maybe I’m wrong. Certainly some of the discussions on BMB and Twitter make me think that perhaps I’m in the minority.
Would love to know what everybody else’s take on this is.